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A Probate Court Upheld Shelly Sterling's Right to Sell the LA Clippers

Looks like the LA Clippers will soon be property of ex-Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer after all. A probate judge ruled Monday that Don Sterling can't stop his estranged wife Shelly from selling the team for a pretty penny — $2 billion, to be exact — because she acted properly in removing him as co-trustee of the Sterling Family Trust. Once Judge Michael Levanas files a written ruling, Shelly Sterling won't even have to wait for her husband's appeal to go through.

Obama Administration Says Russia Violated Cold War-Era Treaty

Today wasn't exactly a good start to Russian president Vladimir Putin's week. In addition to amping up sanctions against Russia, the United States formally concluded Monday that Russia violated a 1987 treaty that banned testing mid-range missiles.

President Ronald Reagan signed the agreement at issue here, the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev at the end of the Cold War. Among the things prohibited by the treaty are ground-launched cruise missiles, which the US now believes Russia has been testing.

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Pregnant Woman Receives What Appears to Be the Latest NYPD Chokehold While Grilling on the Sidewalk

Two banned chokeholds, one tragic death, and one head-stomp later, the recent string of questionable NYPD conduct caught on-camera continues. Photos released today by the advocacy group People Organizing and Working for Empowerment and Respect seem to show a police officer administering a chokehold — a move prohibited by the department for two decades — on 27-year-old Rosan Miller, a woman seven months pregnant, in front of her young daughter.

The Daily News reports that the incident, which occurred on Saturday, began because Miller and her family were barbecuing on the sidewalk.

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I Have Mocked Ross Douthat One Time Too Many

I have spent years gently mocking Ross Douthat, who is actually one of my favorite opinion writers, for his fatal flaw of detecting signs of ideological moderation in a succession of Republican figures like Sarah Palin, Eric Cantor, Tim Pawlenty, and others. Now he has finally snapped. After my latest provocation, Douthat replies with a double-barreled post angrily accusing me of cherry-picking his posts. For good measure, Douthat also accuses me of committing the same crime against Reason’s Peter Suderman, about whom I wrote earlier this month. I’ll address both, beginning with Suderman.

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Why Dollar Stores Are Having a Hard Time Making a Buck

This morning, Dollar Tree announced that it would acquire its rival Family Dollar for about $8.5 billion in cash and stock, merging two of the country’s biggest cheapest-of-the-cheap chains and creating the tantalizing possibility of a store called “Dollar Dollar.”

The acquisition looks like a boon for both sides: Dollar Tree buys access to a big pool of lower-income customers; Family Dollar sells its way out of its current slump at a healthy margin. Still, the acquisition underscores how the low-end retail boom — one of the major retail trends of the past half-decade — has stalled out. The recession created a lot of new customers for dollar stores to cater to. But the recovery has failed to give those customers any new dollars to spend.

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Israeli Prime Minister Talks About ‘Prolonged’ Operation in Gaza As Violence Resumes

A short lull in the fighting between Israel and militants in Gaza has ended. After a mutual 12-hour humanitarian ceasefire on Saturday, the two sides appeared to be launching fewer attacks. The relative quiet led some to believe that the Eid al-Fitr holiday, which marks the end of Ramadan and began on Monday, might be accompanied by an informal truce. Unfortunately, explosions at a Palestinian refugee camp and a Gaza City hospital, as well as  strikes in Israel, effectively eliminated that possibility.

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Shoot-out at West Village Head Shop Wounds 2 U.S. Marshals, 1 NYPD Officer; Suspect Killed

Three law-enforcement officers executing a warrant as part of the federal Fugitive Task Force were injured in a shooting on Monday afternoon at West 4th Street near Sixth Avenue in the West Village. According to NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton, who spoke at a previously scheduled press conference with Mayor de Blasio, the suspect is deceased and a firearm was recovered. The officers, two U.S. Marshals and one NYPD detective, were transported to Bellevue Hospital and are in stable condition.

"It appears that the injuries to the officers are not life threatening," said Mayor de Blasio.

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